Learning About Peyronie's Disease

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Male reproductive system

What is Peyronie's disease?

Peyronie's (say "pay-ruh-NEEZ") disease is a curve in the penis. It is caused by scar tissue in the lining of the penis. The scar tissue makes the penis less flexible. This forces it to bend during an erection. The scar tissue may be caused by minor injuries to the penis during sexual intercourse.

What can you expect?

At first, the most common symptoms are painful erections and a curve in your penis. Later on, the pain may get better or go away completely. But the curve in the penis may remain.

The curve is most easily seen during an erection. It may be so severe that intercourse is not possible. You may not be able to keep an erection.

Sometimes the disease gets better on its own. If it doesn't get better on its own, you may need treatment if you have painful erections or the disease gets in the way of your sex life.

How is it treated?

  • NSAIDs such as ibuprofen (Advil) or naproxen (Aleve) can help treat pain.
  • Surgery may help. But it is usually only used if you can't have intercourse. Experts usually suggest that before trying surgery, you wait at least a year.
  • Counseling or sexual therapy may be useful for problems with sexual intimacy caused by the disease.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

Where can you learn more?

Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.